Locust City Council gets Quik Trip update

A nationwide convenience store chain will be coming to Locust in 2024, as Quik Trip, also known as QT, will locate at the southwest corner of West Main Street and South Central Avenue (the N.C. Highway 24-27/N.C. Highway 200 intersection).

Following a public hearing in which no opposition to the building proposal was registered, Locust City Council members voted 6-0 (with Councilwoman Mandy Watson absent) to grant the company’s request for a conditional rezoning.

“Quik Trip’s values are family-friendly,” said QT Real Estate Manager J.D. Dudley, who presented the company’s request to the council. “You won’t find risque magazines, rolling papers or anything like that on the shelves. Our employees are not allowed to have tattoos, and we don’t even allow them to have facial hair.”

Dudley noted that although the chain is best known for gasoline sales, in recent years it has moved more into food sales.

“Our brisket is better than Buc-ee’s,” he interjected, adding that made-to-order food is available as well as “Coffee Wow,” a coffee bar where customers can self-serve regular coffee, lattes and similar hot beverages. Foods available include traditional fast food as well as bakery goods.

The chain is a major supporter of United Way and Folds of Honor, and also participates in the national Safe Place program, a youth outreach and prevention program for young people under the age of 18 who are in need of immediate help and safety.

“All QTs are Safe Places,” said Dudley, adding that nationwide, the chain has provided assistance to more than 600 endangered youngsters since having joined the program.

“We are also supportive of local law enforcement,” added Dudley.

Councilman Harry Fletcher commended Dudley on the company’s decision to save as many trees as possible on the development site, saying, “It’s good to hear that you are preserving the oak trees located on that corner.”

“A buffer of green space was one of the things we added after bringing our original design to you all,” Dudley said, adding that the building’s front and back are identical in design, and will appear the same from both South Central Avenue and West Main Street.

“The building is designed with lots of glass and an elevated checkout area so that law enforcement can see inside easily,” he said.

Councilman Mike Haigler praised the design, describing it as “the culmination of several months of collaboration” between QT, the Locust Planning Board and city staff.

According to Dudley, QT will “move as quickly as we can to begin the process,” adding that initial steps will involve collecting soil cores and samples on the site, with closing on the property planned for April.

Editor’s Note: See an upcoming edition of The Stanly News & Press to learn how some community members want to save a historic house on this property.

Toby Thorpe is a freelance writer for The Stanly News & Press.